Burl Ives

The Best of Burl Ives, Vol. 2

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In contrast to its first double-LP set on Burl Ives, which appeared at the height of the early-'60s folk revival, MCA Records wasn't doing too much with folk music in 1975, when it issued this second volume -- so it was folded into the company's still-viable country music library, along with a similar release on the Weavers, alongside the work of Patsy Cline, Ernest Tubb, Webb Pierce, et. al. The selection is drawn mostly from Ives' early-'60s Nashville-based work with the label, most of which features the very restrained (and appealing) support of the Anita Kerr Singers. And the selection is a good one, highlighted by such killer tracks as "Long Black Veil" and "A Little Bitty Tear," but also a little skimpy at five songs per side for a total of 20 on the two-LP set. This is obviously not a collection aimed at the most serious fans, as there is no annotation to speak of, and not even any release dates listed.